Societies have been touted as the best way to engage in extra curricular activities while studying in Delhi University (DU). There are times however when they fail to meet the expectations we have and make us ask whether its time to leave.

The first thing that many of us in first year are told after we get into DU is that our lives will revolve around whichever college society/ies that we choose. “ classroom se zyada society mai seekhega tu ( You will learn more in your society than in the classroom.) , “tujhe tera crowd society mai milega (You will find like-minded people in your society.)” While these monikers might stand true for the right society for an individual, it is not universally true.

What one should keep first and foremost with all endeavors including societies is the affect that it is has on our mental health. Societies and the extra work load they bring can have a negative impact even if we are surrounded by wonderful people in the society. Paridhi, a first year student from Jesus and Mary College, says “ I was not in a good place mental health wise, and I didn’t think I could commit to the work in a way I would’ve liked to, that resulted in me learning more too. With something like Poetry too, despite the society being full of amazing, empathetic women; it felt like a burden to keep afloat with everything that was going on.”

In the current political scenario, if you are one of those who believe that now is the time to stand up and raise your voice for what India stands for, a college society can be a roadblock in your way and a source of frustration. Lots of societies choose to be ‘apolitical’ o down right apathetic to the situation in the country. With your societies refusing to take stands and/or prioritising practice or work before dissenting, It is a very valid reason to leave your society. Apoliticism, of all things, is ironically one of the things followed in many societies that function around expressing your opinions. All this, amongst major national political crisis.

Another reason one would join a society is for professional growth, and this dilemma between professional growth and fun is the reason why many of us end up in academic societies as well as cultural societies. But managing many societies at a time isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, which at times forces one to leave a society. Theoretically, one should go for professional growth but cultural societies get an upper hand because of the family like feeling that one gets owing to hours and hours of practice, hundreds of cultural fests to compete in and the liberal way in which they function.

But not all societies are a family, a fresher to the society may find it difficult to socialise with their seniors, thus getting the sense of lonesome even after spending most of your day with their society. This feeling of alienation could also be the reason you want to leave your society.

Amidst all these fun and partying that these societies offer, they also come with a pinch of salt in the form of toxicity arising from the “circuits” that each society has in the University. Every weekend there is a new competition, a new tournament, with the same people in the circuit one would see the same people quite often! While many of us would want to be friends with different people within the circuit, there is also this competitiveness owing to everyone’s desire to win the cash prizes that leads to this toxicity. Sadly, this is the ugly truth of societies that make it unbearable for someone who is not much dedicated to the art.

Whatever be your passion, there is a society for that, but at the same time, if you feel like a particular society would not help you to pursue your dreams, it is okay for you to leave it and make a trail of your own, for one can take the road less traveled.

Feature Image Credits: Hitesh Kalra for DU Beat

Akshat Arora

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Prabhanu Kumar Das

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Varsity seeks President’s intervention to stop the construction of a 39-storey high rise private building in North Campus.

The Delhi University (DU) has urged the President of India, the Vice President, and the Delhi Lieutenant Governor to intervene in the matter pertaining to the construction of a 39-storey private building in North Campus. The Vice President of the country is the officiating Chancellor of the University, and the Lieutenant Governor of Delhi is the Chief Rector of the varsity.

Various sections have condemned the construction of the building, saying it is being constructed illegally on public land. They have also said the building will overlook six girls’ hostels in the varsity and will invade their privacy. Protests in this regard have regularly been ongoing since the move was given clearance by the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) earlier last month.

The Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) has also opposed the construction of the building in North Campus saying it “would significantly alter the social and cultural landscape of Delhi University” and also compromise the “safety of women students”.

The building is coming up adjacent to Vishwavidyalaya Metro Station in the North Campus of the University.

On Saturday, the varsity’s vice-chancellor Yogesh Tyagi announced at the Executive Council meeting that the varsity will be developed into an “integrated closed campus” within a year, sources said, adding the Council sought the support of North MCD and Delhi Police for this. The University’s South Campus, on the other hand, is a closed campus. The varsity has also formed a 20-member task force to look into the matter and address issues like illegal parking, traffic, incidents of snatching in the campus.

DU had also written to the Prime Minister’s Office, the Home Ministry as well as the Ministry of Defense on this matter. DUTA, the teachers’ body also said that there is already a severe paucity of spaces for students on campus, for their accommodation, recreation and for other academic activities and the use of this space for a residential complex is questionable in its intent. DU also insists that the construction of this building will come in the way of the Master Plan of Delhi, 2021, that has been envisaged for the city’s infrastructure. Moreover, according to the documents accessed by Mail Today, 228 trees have been felled for the construction of this building.

Feature Image Credits: The Times of India

Bhavya Pandey

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Read our Print Editor’s words of gratitude to the friends who anchored her and made her grow up at the same time. Share them with yours, because letters never go out of style.

Dear College Best Friends,

I would ideally start this letter by recalling a fond childhood memory, or saying how the last fifteen years of my life would not have been the same without you. However, as shocking as it seems, we technically did not grow up together, but we did, in so many more ways than age could ever define the terms “growing up.” When I entered the dynamic world of being a university student, I had this preconceived notion about not finding anyone better than my school mates. I am glad you proved me wrong (for once).

To my college best friend whom I met in the first week of classes in the first year, thank you for being scared with me. First year was a rollercoaster ride in terms of emotions and to have someone to share the fear and nerves, was comforting. Thank you for being my cheerleader during my society auditions, for being as shocked to hear how much the academic structure was so different and advanced from CBSE (which seemed like the toughest thing we would ever tackle in life during twelfth grade), and for pretending to be grown up mature adults, when we were so naïve and foolish.

To my college best friend whom I met in the second year college, thank you for being reckless with me. Second year in college is the year for all the mistakes and you stood by me through all my phases. Thank you for being a shoulder to cry on when I went through that one (or multiple) breakup(s), for being my partner in crime (sometimes, literally), for being the person who discovered how much capacity I had in terms of intoxicating substances (you know what I mean), for being my cover in front of my parents (who love you more than they love me) when I needed to get out of the house, for standing up to the professor who hated me for no reason, and for never judging me or abandoning me through all the mishaps and my embarrassing moments.

To my college best friend from third year, thank you for being my support system. Third year, although it has not fully culminated yet, has been the scariest year thus far, in which, we have done the most “growing up.” Thank you for always taking my late night calls, listening and relating to my rants. You could not always give me the best advice, but the fact that you were there to listen to help me think out loud, meant so much to me that I could not possibly address it adequately in words. You helped me through countless points of existential crises, comforted me through multiple breakdowns, and held my hand through job / grad – school rejection letters.

Some of you, I have known for all three years of my college, and some I got the pleasure of meeting through my journey as a college student. But each one of my “best” friends has contributed substantially to the person I am today. From deciding our outfit for our freshers’ party to going shopping for our farewell saree, it has been a wild ride and I am glad I had you as my companion. Thank you for being the Siddharth and Sameer to my Akshay, the Avi and Aditi to my Bunny. This may be a farewell from the classrooms we have spent three years sleeping in, but this certainly isn’t a goodbye. I look forward to hearing your rants about your future colleagues / Master’s professors. I look forward to growing up some more, with you.

Dear college best friends, for you, I am eternally grateful.

Yours truly,

Bhavya Banerjee

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Image Credits: Deepesh Varshney for DU Beat

Image Caption: Graduating Seniors of DUB (from left to right; Saubhagya Saxena, Sharvi Maheshwari, Vijeata Balani, Bhavya Banerjee, Akarsh Mathur, Kinjal Pandey, Niharika Dabral, Adithya Khanna).

August, 2016

Phone rings at 1 am, laptop is on, but the plate of food lies cold despite my mum shouting for 10 times incessantly. 14 years of schooling and nearly two years of college and now the moment of truth is in front of me, standing and staring at me, looking deep into my eyes, as if mocking me silently, asking me what am I really doing ? And for whom? If you were one of those kids back in school who used to take up everything with passion, from a small responsibility of decorating the class boards, to now taking up roles in and outside college, you would understand that it is more like an obsession. To be omnipresent. Yes, we are the workaholics and we are proud of it, but of late, I have been strongly reconsidering my position.

College opens up avenues to really push one’s passions beyond imaginable limits and for someone who loves to dawn new roles, oh it’s Christmas! While the cut throat competition, deadlines, struggle for perfection and lack of sleep really takes the better of you initially, but there comes a point when all this becomes a part of the monotonous routine cycle and isn’t fun anymore. It is this time when you start self-introspecting and questioning yourself for your decisions. Do you really enjoy working day and night for things you may not really care about deep down? What is this perfection you are striving to achieve? Is perfection an illusion? Maybe, maybe not.

But deep down, a very strong feeling remains unsettled. The feeling of uncertainty. We can’t deny that many a times, when a crunch situation strikes, we miss being the careless kid from kindergarten where mom and dad could answer for that fight we had at school or when we broke that test-tube in the lab, remember? The realisation of growing up with the blink of an eye and working robotically each day, in a regimented setup, can make anyone irritable and if you, by nature are a workaholic, it becomes difficult for you to sometimes define the boundaries for yourself and you don’t know when to stop being a robot.

When all these questions and situations were striking my head, there came a moment where I just sat alone and a sudden realisation dawned upon me that time has to fly anyway, so why not enjoy every moment fully. The very next moment I realised I was running down the stairs of my room and was hugging my mom in the kitchen, who was looking so pretty, and damn I didn’t realise how much time had it been since I looked at her face so carefully, as my phone’s screen was the only thing that my face was constantly bowed down to. And let me tell you, for a workaholic, more work is like more energy, but, the satisfaction I got when I hugged my mom after a hard day, no amount of work could energise me as much as that moment did and I want to do this more often. We live in a world where many families fear persecution, they don’t know whether they will see the light of the day, and here we are, on the other end of the globe, worried about the latest iPhone in the market, those fancy shoes we saw the other day on an Instagram account and don’t really enjoy the bounties of life, the presence of a family and the significance of this temporal dimension called time.

Life is a puzzle and every piece is a phase that holds its own significance to the larger picture of the puzzle. So don’t get stuck finding the ends of a particular piece. Enjoy the creation of this puzzle by giving equal importance to each of the pieces.

Featured Image Credits: www.wetslipper.com

Riya Chhibber

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